Well tomorrow is the big day. My neck surgery is on Monday (June 17th) at 1:00, and with each minute that goes by I get a little more nervous. I guess everyone going through this surgery wonders if they are doing the right thing, but I keep reminding myself that I really don’t have a choice. If I opt to not do the surgery, I could be paralyzed if I am jolted or in a car accident. I just cannot take that chance. Of course, there is also that same fear by having the surgery.
My husband will be with me at the hospital and has taken a few days off of work to help me (oh how I hate depending on people to help me!). My daughter is on Summer vacation now, and she will take over when he goes back to work. I have a great support system, thank goodness, but I am so used to doing things on my own, so this will be a struggle. The upside is that I am not allowed to cook or clean for about 2 months. I think that’s a pretty sweet deal 🙂
I have been told by several people who have had this surgery to not push it – to just take it easy and let my body heal. I fully intend to do this, as I don’t want to have this surgery again. I am hoping once will do the trick, although my doctor did mention that the disc above the ones they are working on is bulging too. He said that if they work on that disc now though, that my range of motion could be severely impacted. He told me that if I wait on that disc, that I could potentially go 10 or 15 years with a better quality of life. I decided to wait, as I want to enjoy life as much as possible, without my mobility being affected too much.
I have been busy purchasing the suggested items that I will need after surgery. I purchased a grabber (and subsequently grabbed some food off of my husband’s plate – just because it amused me), a variety of pillows, lots and lots of Jello, applesauce, pudding and soup. I have heard that swallowing might be difficult for awhile, so I think I am prepared.
Of course, as soon as I am able, I will be updating here. I really have no idea how long it might be before I am ready to do this, but I’m sure my friend (and contributor), Erin, would also be happy to do a quick post with an update. Erin will also be updating on my personal Facebook page and my Facebook fan page. *Thank you Erin*!
Speaking of the blog, my contributor Randi will be handling correspondence and other things in my absence. She will do a fantastic job, and if you need anything, please don’t hesitate to reach out to her. She will be checking my emails. I cannot thank Randi enough…this will be the first time that I have handed over my blog to someone before, for any length of time. It is SUCH a relief to know that I don’t have to worry about it, and I can just rest and get better (hopefully quickly). *Thank you Randi*!
So what exactly will they be doing during surgery? They have changed their game plan a bit since my last post about it, and now they will be doing an Anterior Cervical Corpectomy and Fusion (ACCF). Basically they will be removing two discs as well as one vertebrae, and then fusion. They will be using my own bone (the removed vertebrae, crushed up) for the fusion, which will be nice, and hopefully the fusion will be successful. Originally they were just going to remove the discs and do a fusion, but there is a lot of bone growing from the vertebrae and they feel that by removing it, the pressure on the spinal cord should be completely relieved.
I will probably be in the hospital until Wednesday. If I am able to eat and my pain is under control, maybe it will be sooner. I have no idea how I will be feeling, or when I will be ready to come home. In addition to my husband, my kids (teenager and young adult) will be helping me, as well as my good buddy Doreen.
Thank you for the thoughts and prayers – I look forward to posting again soon!